Guilt is a powerful motivator. I find that mommy guilt frequently makes me forget the valuable lessons I’ve learned about parenting.
Here’s one important parenting lesson I’m usually better at remembering: never promise anything.
It’s easy not to break promises you don’t make, you know?
I like to keep expectations low.
I’d also like to eliminate the words, “But YOU SAID!” from my children’s daily speech. Anyone have ideas for that? I’ll entertain all comers.
Anyway, I had a bad spell of mommy guilt when we sold our farm and moved back to town. I know moving is a normal thing. I moved when I was a kid, multiple times, and I survived it. It’s just so different for them. . .for all of us, really, this life in town gig. They have far less freedom to move, far less privacy, far less space.
I think they lost more than we did. There is nothing better than a farm childhood. Truly.
So I felt bad. And in the midst of all that, I promised them that they could pick whatever color paint they wanted for their new rooms.
My boy picked a midnight blue so that he could finally stick a bunch of glow in the dark planets and constellations on his wall and pretend he’s fighting the Clone Wars when he’s falling asleep at night.
It’s actually pretty cool. I have no beef with the blue paint.
My girl picked an awfully bright purple color (and I mean awfully) called Grapolicious.
It’s similar to the color of this house.
Stupid promising things. Now I have to pretend to like this color until she outgrows it herself and is ready to repaint.
Luckily, I did not promise to paint all four walls, and have managed to convince them both that “accent walls” are the coolest approach.
So, fellow parents, let’s review the rules of promises.
1. Don’t make promises.